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GREEKMOD 101 AND 102 (undergraduate) / GREEKMOD 501 AND 502 (graduate): BEGINNER/FIRST-YEAR MODERN GREEK
These two courses are designed for students with no previous exposure to the language as well as for students with some basic understanding of Modern Greek. They provide students with basic skills in reading, speaking, and writing and introduces them to Modern Greek history and culture through media such as film and music.

GREEKMOD 105: BEGINNER/CONVERSATION MODERN GREEK aims to help students speak basic Greek. It is designed for beginners who know how to read but can barely speak. 

These two courses assume familiarity with the basics of reading, writing, and speaking. Using authentic materials (film, video, texts, etc.) and face to face exchanges with Greek students via videoconferencing, students enrich their vocabulary, improve fluency in speaking, and discover their means of personal expression in Modern Greek. Enrollment in the second-year Modern Greek courses requires having attended Modern Greek 101/102. Students who want to join the class without having attended the first-year Modern Greek courses must take a placement exam.

GREEKMOD 205: INTERMEDIATE CONVERSATION MODERN GREEK aims to give confidence in the ability to handle many speaking situations and topics. For students who have had at least three (3) terms of Greek or whose oral skills place them in the 2nd year conversation level.

The course builds on the language skills acquired in Modern Greek 101/102 and 201/202. The course is a thematic survey of Modern Greek culture through literature, theater, film, and music, focusing on family/relationships, science/environment/”academic” Greek, and student life/career/ Greek for the professional sector. As part of this course students are also exposed to the contemporary pop-culture of Greece through movies, newspapers, music, TV programs, the web, and cartoons. The third year is designed for students who have completed the two-year language sequence. Alternatively, students with advanced skills can join the class after taking a placement test.

The course introduces students to Modern Greek as a language of creative expression and performance. It focuses on literature, theater, performance/ improv, creative writing, and translation. Students engage with contemporary visual arts, performance art, music (hip hop/ rap,) theater, etc. The course is designed for students who have completed GREEKMOD 301. Alternatively, students with advanced skills can join the class after taking a placement test.

The course emphasizes self-expression in conversational Greek. The course touches on challenging aspects of the language, such as idioms and phrases, the language of the media, and fast and furious conversations on current events.

Every day, life’s momentous developments are reported in thousands of languages, including Greek. This interactive class is designed to give learners of Greek with intermediate to proficient reading knowledge the opportunity to build on their linguistic, cultural, and global literacies by translating texts from Greek to English. Students will use a variety of tools for different texts to figure out what is being said. While working through the translation process and comparing translations, they will think about the difficulties of bringing Greek perspectives into English—especially when words, phrases, feelings, or connotations are untranslatable. Thus a second goal of the class is to develop an appreciation of the challenges of translation. Texts to be considered include newspaper and internet reports, political cartoons, picture captions, posters, graffiti, commercials, advertisements, films subtitles, performance, and literary works. The course is intensely practical while it also introduces students to theories of translation.

The course examines cultural, religious, social, and political trends as reflected in literature, music, folklore, popular culture, and ideology. Emphasis is given to the last two centuries but the survey begins with the late Byzantine and Ottoman eras. Satisfies Social Science requirement.

The course explores questions of ethnicity, race, gender, and social class in the United States over the last two centuries as reflected in Greek-American history and culture. The objective is to encourage reflection on the cultural diversity of identity and awareness of racism, discrimination, and intolerance in our world.

Discover the city of Athens from its deepest history to its dynamic, vibrant, present! Explore its neighborhoods, find out about its people and their histories, and investigate some of its most famous and enigmatic places (what was the Parthenon?).

Athens is both a museum of Greek history and a living entity: a laboratory for social experiments and a stage for ongoing conflicts. Defining features are the city’s continuous dialogue with its past and reckoning with competing claims. This course studies that many-sided dialogue. Students learn to “read” intersecting narratives of competing claims on the “palimpsest” of the city’s multi-layered surface and consider the shape they give to city life in the present.

Students in this upper level writing course learn to develop close text reading skills of academic writing, and generate thesis driven arguments bringing together multiple lines of evidence derived from archaeology, architecture, the visual arts, inscriptions, primary sources, museum exhibitions, contemporary literature, and media representations of the past.

The course is organized on the basis of a series of writing workshops. Fulfills Humanities and Upper Level Writing Requirements.

The course examines the literature of modern travel to Greece and the issues it raises about antiquity, modernity, ethnography, otherness, orientalism, and Western identity. Readings include works by British, French, German, American, and Greek authors. Art, film, and the media provide different measures of comparison. Satisfies Humanities

GREEKMOD 350/COMPLIT 382: GREEK MYTH IN MODERN LITERATURE AND CINEMA This course introduces students to uses of Greek myths in film across genres and cultures. Attention is given especially to how film takes stories transmitted orally or through writing and bring them to audiences visually and immersively in settings that are modern or future oriented. Most films viewed in this course don’t have easily identifiable classical heroes but characters transformed into wandering, questioning Greeks by classic twists in their reality. By following the travels and transformations of stories once found in Greek poetry and drama into the modern medium of film, students will develop basic knowledge of key myths and familiarity with film technology and how it tells stories. They will learn to compare different versions of myths; look at the emergence of movements and genres in film adaptations, and explore the contexts of cinematic adaptation and its impact on the translation of ancient sources. The subject is surprisingly relevant. Film is saturated with references to ancient myths, and people use these stories on a daily basis to make sense of the world. The course fulfils the Humanities Requirement.

GREEKMOD 360 / COMPLIT 372 (taught in English): THE BORDER CROSSED US: BORDER REGIMES IN GLOBAL CONTEXTS (Comp Lit: Lit and Identity) Our world is defined by borders. Political, cultural, and linguistic containment and filtration systems cut through us and shape our sense of belonging. We carry them inside of us and reproduce them, through acts as simple as signing a passport, writing an essay in a standard dialect, or filling out an I-9 Form. This begs the question: what precisely are borders made of? How are they maintained, moved, or crossed? In this course we explore these questions through two comparative geographies: The Mediterranean and U.S./Mexico. Moving between literature, film, anthropology, archeology, law and climatology, we will examine the strategies by which communities are partitioned and policed in political space, in workplaces, and in language and cultural spaces, and the strategies by which they bleed across such partitions.

Our identities are defined by all those things, places, customs, and practices we inherited from our ancestors; all those things we acknowledge as “our heritage”. This may be our personal heritage, our family heritage, our community heritage, or world heritage. Given its significance for establishing who we are heritage needs to be protected, preserved, and taught to younger generations.  This course explores heritage, in other words, the ways in which we experience the past in the present, and the challenges and ethical dilemmas that arise from such encounters. What parts of the past do we value most as “ours” and why? How do we ascribe value to heritage in the 21st century? Students visit “sites” of such encounters: the ways in which the past is portrayed or appropriated by the media (from Spartacus to the Vikings and the imaginary worlds of fantasy like Game of Thrones) and marketing, the challenges of urban and tourist development vs. historical preservation, the ethical and legal implications of the antiquities trade especially in the face of war and conflict, the role of museums, and the agency of communities. The course fulfils the Humanities Requirement.


GREEKMOD 499, 599 DIRECTED READING for the undergraduate or graduate student.

Students may decide to take structure courses for the Modern Greek Minor and Major from other departments and programs, including (but not limited to): Comparative Literature, History, History of Art, Anthropology, etc. All such choices must be discussed with and pre-approved by the Modern Greek Advisor.  

Related Courses

Related courses can be found in the LSA course catalogue in the fields of Comparative Literature, American Studies, Anthropology, History, Political Science, International Studies, in consultation with the faculty advisor.